Eight years ago I was sitting in the Fellowship Hall of my church. I had just come back to Montgomery, Alabama and I was determined to only be there a few months. I left Montgomery when I was 12 and spent my middle school and high school years in the DC suburbs. I went to college in Tennessee. I spent summers working in theatres in Pennsylvania and New Hampshire. After college I took a job with a touring children's theatre out of Montana. I spent that year doing theatre all over the country and had the time of my life. I had a few months in between that job and my move to New York City. I didn't know where to go, so I went home to Alabama, but only for 5 months. At least that was my plan. Maybe I should have asked God what His plan was first.
In that interim I went to my old home church. I didn't want to be there. I wanted to be back out on the road. I missed theatre and I missed traveling, but I knew it was for a very short period of time. My apartment in NYC wouldn't be ready until January, so I needed to suck it up. I went to church my first Sunday back in town. They had started a new Contemporary service. I was excited to check it out. I loved the preaching. The pastor, John Schmidt, delivered an amazing sermon that spoke to me in such a powerful way. I loved the series they were doing. I thought the set was incredible. And I developed a crush on the worship leader.
I called him cute worship leader Rob. I loved his humor, his talent, and his obvious love for the Lord. He would do the funniest things in the service that kept me engaged in worship. He was quick on his feet, humble, funny, and he had a great rapport with our pastor that I loved. I admired the way he lead our congregation and was so impressed overall that he was using the gifts God had blessed him with to change lives.
It was about to be his 30th birthday. They announced in church that they were going to have a fellowship night at a local spot and everyone should come and hang out, but that it would also be Rob's birthday. The congregation was invited to come out and wish him a Happy 30th Birthday. I wanted to go so badly because I wanted to meet him. There was just something about him that was so appealing to me and I just knew that we would hit it off. But I was shy. No really, please don't laugh out loud. I was actually shy. I didn't know what to say. I got so tongue tied whenever cute worship leader Rob was around and I didn't want to show up at his birthday parity looking like a big dork. I didn't go and spent all night at home wishing I had.
4 months later we had our first date. The next day we filmed a funny video together for our church. A week after that I moved to NYC. I went to 5 Broadway shows a week. I hung out with so many wonderful friends. I went to museums on the weekend. I worked at Applebees. We stayed in touch. Then I got a job touring Europe with a children's theatre. I headed off to Germany. We stayed in touch. I went to Greece. We wrote letters. I was all over Europe and then back in NYC. We were still calling each other. I had a decision to make. Stay in NYC and live the life I had always wanted or come back to Montgomery? To make things harder I was offered my first job at an equity theatre just as I was contemplating leaving NYC. I had no idea what to do- so I prayed.
8 years later I think you know my choice. And here I am in Kansas with cute video director Rob, our two adorable children, and our 2 annoying dogs. Happy Birthday, darling. I love you and I wish I had gone to your party 8 years ago. But you made me a little too tongue tied and you still do today. I'm a pretty lucky girl, and just know that Applebees doesn't have anything on you, baby.
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